One of the most important undertakings of any startup is finding the best tools to support the company in its mission. Thus, your writing startup needs the best tool for creating your novel. To that end, there are a number of elements to take into account. Some will matter more to one person than they do to another, but I encourage you to consider them all and weigh your options carefully. Don’t make the mistake I made.
In writing Things Grak Hates, I had the wrong idea of what I needed in a writing tool. My initial thinking was that since I move around often and work on multiple computers, having a single web source for my book would be the most important element. I assumed that this would ensure a quick startup and ease of use when on the go. In hindsight, I was horribly mistaken. These are important details, of course, but not the most important features. Also, I could have created a Word document and just shared it across my computers through Dropbox. But my assumption was poor, and it led to a poor decision.
So, after a brief search, I chose Google Drive, thinking it had everything I needed in a writing tool. As it turns out, this is only true if you take a rushed and superficial glance at it as I did. In retrospect, Drive is an atrocious tool for novel writing–on a level only marginally better than Notepad. My complaints about it are numerous, but the top ones are:
- I once lost a considerable amount of work when I edited a file offline and tried to sync it with Drive’s version.
- It’s incredibly slow, especially if you’re working on a longer document.
- Their spelling and grammar checks are heinous.
For the final leg of my editing process, I opted to export my novel into a .doc and edit it in MS Word. It felt like weights had been removed, and the work flew.
So in summary, Google Drive is bad. Really bad. If you want something quick and dirty online, then fine, use it. But if you’re hoping to do anything of importance, I would avoid it until serious changes are made.
That is all.